Watching out for Self Reliance

When I was in my twenties, I was in a relationship with someone I cared about very deeply. However, it was a “come close”- “go away” relationship. The distancer and the pursuer.

Every time we would begin to trust he would pull away. Then after I let go, he would come back and pursue the relationship again, and I would fall right into it. It was an emotional roller coaster.

We were both pretty wounded people at the time. He grew up with an alcoholic father, and I grew up in a family where I was referred to as the “mistake” baby. I was pretty much on my own when it came to emotions and learning about life. It was trial and error.

I remember distinctly to this day, a friend trying to comfort me during one of our “distancing” episodes. She turned to me and said,” I am so sorry he won’t allow you to love him”. Those few little words became a turning point for me and have stuck in my head to this day. In his woundedness my boyfriend did not allow himself to be vulnerable. He only allowed me to get so close, then he would bolt because he was afraid to trust, he was afraid to allow himself to be loved.

In retrospect I have come to recognize it is not so different from my relationship with God. I get close, and then I bolt. I am afraid to allow Him to love me because I have not had a good foundation of love in my life. All those that were supposed to love me and care for me abandoned me. My parents when they kicked me out of the house as a teen because I was pregnant and coerced me into an abortion in my fourth month of pregnancy, and my future husband who I married being very wounded from my abortion and who was suffering from addictions.

When I finally turned to God, it was out of desperation. I was broken, and a mess. Even the thought of trusting would send me into a panic. I was self-reliant even though my decisions in life were not the best. The trouble was I did not trust myself either because I had caved into that abortion so many years before. I knew needed help and I wanted to believe God was merciful and loving. I longed to believe in love.

It took a long time but through prayer and spiritual and emotional counseling and learning about the impact of abortion and how it was affecting my decisions, I slowly grew to trust God. I saw that He was different, that He really did unconditionally love me and longed to come into my sufferings and heal me.

Little by little He reached into my wounds and embraced them, showing me He was there for me all along.

Don’t get me wrong, I still have a tendency of self-reliance and always have to be on the watch for it.  I can become fearful when I feel God asking me to do somethings in accordance with His will for me, but despite my feelings I chose to trust. To live by faith.

I give myself to Him each day wherever I am knowing He is guiding, healing me and leading me to Himself.

Those words of my friends so long ago, “I am so sorry he won’t allow you to love him.” Have become a gage for me, a gage that reminds me not to do that to God, but to allow His love into my heart no matter how frightened I may feel trusting in His love, His healing, and that He will never abandon me.

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